Pope, Anglican leader call for unity in mission and service
Pope Francis and Anglican Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury together charged 19 pairs of Catholic and Anglican bishops to return to their home countries and work together to promote joint prayer, joint proclamation of the Gospel and, especially, joint works of charity and justice.
“Today we rejoice to commission them and send them forth in pairs as the Lord sent out the 72 disciples,” the pope and archbishop said in a common declaration signed Oct. 5 at the end of an evening prayer service.
The 38 bishops, who are part of the International Anglican-Roman Catholic Commission on Unity and Mission, included: for the United States, Episcopalian Bishop John Bauerschmidt of Tennessee and Catholic Auxiliary Bishop Denis J. Madden of Baltimore; for Canada, Anglican Bishop Dennis Drainville of Quebec and Catholic Bishop Gary Gordon of Victoria, British Columbia; and for Australia, Anglican Bishop John Parkes of Wangaratta and Catholic Archbishop Christopher Prowse of Canberra-Goulburn.
“Let the message go out from this holy place, as the good news was sent out so many centuries ago, that Catholics and Anglicans will work together to give voice to our common faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, to bring relief to the suffering, to bring peace where there is conflict, to bring dignity where it is denied and trampled upon,” Francis and Welby said in their statement.